The speculation over Zion Williamson‘s future with New Orleans has Knicks fans dreaming of acquiring the 2019 top pick. Williamson’s former coach and current TV analyst Stan Van Gundy scoffs at the notion that big-name players want to go to New York, Ethan Sears of the New York Post relays.
“No matter how many times people have proven they don’t want to play for the Knicks, the Knicks have this idea that everybody in the league wants to play for the Knicks,” Van Gundy said on the Dan Le Batard Show. “Now, what is the last time it actually happened that somebody came and tried to get their way to New York? Like, never in the last 20 years? But still the Knicks and Knicks fans think everybody is trying to get to the Knicks. I’m not saying [Zion] won’t end up there — there’s all kinds of ways people can end up somewhere — but this idea that everybody wants to be a New York Knick, I mean if that were the case, then they wouldn’t be as bad as they’ve been for the last 20 years.”
We have more from the Atlantic Division:
- Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau played rookie center Jericho Sims ahead of Nerlens Noel and Taj Gibson on Friday, which may signal a shift in philosophy, Marc Berman of the New York Post writes. Thibodeau typically relies on veterans, so it was unusual to see a late second-round pick get 18 minutes of playing time. “We’ll see how it unfolds. Taj did a good job for us,” Thibodeau said. “Nerlens did a good job for us. Jericho, the opportunities that he’s had, he’s played well. So just let him get in there; let him gain some more experience.”
- Raptors forward OG Anunoby will get a second opinion on his injured finger, Josh Lewenberg of TSN Sports tweets. An X-ray revealed that Anunoby had a fractured right ring finger and would miss some games. The trip to the specialist will presumably clarify a recovery timeline.
- James Harden, who made his Sixers debut on Friday, wanted to play with Joel Embiid “for a long time,” president of basketball operations Daryl Morey told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne. “James is a basketball genius,” Morey said. “And he’s been wanting to play with Joel for a long time. I think he’s always thought Joel was, like, the perfect guy to pair with him.”